Mainstreaming Policies and Services for People with Disabilities in Ukraine

Project Summary

A joint initiative of UNDP and UNICEF in Ukraine, the programme promotes the inclusion and participation of people with disabilities by developing and applying universal design standards for products, environments, programmes and services to be usable by all people to the greatest extent possible. It seeks to address existing barriers that prevent or limit equal access for persons with disabilities to services and facilities intended for the general public.

Project goals

The programme works at national and sub-national levels to achieve the following goals:

1.       Develop the capacities of sub-national authorities to apply the accessibility and universal design principles. 

Piloted in two regions of Kharkiv oblast – town of Chuhuyev and Valkivskiy rayon, the programme will undertake a comprehensive assessment of existing capacities and barriers in the environment, processes, products and services provided to persons with disabilities to gauge clients’ satisfaction with current policies, practices, and services. Together with local community representatives, the most critical issues will be for which specific interventions will be develop to demonstrate how accessibility and universal design principles are applied in practice through small initiatives in the area of employment, healthcare and social services.

2.        Raise awareness about disability, accessibility and universal design principles at the national level. 

  • Comprehensive and tailored training on disability, accessibility and universal design issues for professionals of relevant ministries, service providers, business, and civil society organisations;
  • Information and public awareness campaigns to overcome prejudices towards persons with disabilities and to promote accessibility and universal design at the early stages of design and development of products, programmes, and services;
  • Sharing of good practices on accessibility and universal design;
  • Adoption of accessibility and universal design regulations and/or training programmes by government agencies and/or educational institutions. 

Upon completion, the programme will organize the first national conference on accessibility and universal design to share the best practices and results of its interventions.


At the national level:

  • National Memorandum of Understanding was signed with the Joint Programme partners.
  • Over 70 representatives of ministries, state services, institutes, judiciary and human rights experts involved in designing and implementing state policies in the areas of education, medicine, social services, transport, and architecture have been trained on Universal Design and accessibility. In addition, private sector representatives have been trained on universal design principles and their role in promoting a socially responsible business.
  • Seminar on Universal Design for UN country team was organised.
  • Press club for national and regional mass media was organized to discuss the role of media in promoting the rights and inclusion of people with disabilities.
  • A two-day capacity development training “Universal Design: international experience and best practices” was held for 45 representatives of 26 state bodies, municipalities and representatives from NGOs on 13-14 May 2014, and was conducted by  an international trainer Dr Olga Krassioukova-Enns (see photos here).
  • A two-day capacity development training was held on 15-16 May 2014 for 26 representatives of 20 regional and national universities on the topic of Universal Design and Inclusive education, and was conducted by an international trainer Dr Olga Krassioukova-Enns (see photos here).
  • Press Lunch was held for 16 journalists to share international experience of introduction of Universal Design. The press-lunch resulted in 24 publications in on-line and print media and 2 TV stories (link).
  • Representatives of the Joint Programme took part in the Urban Civic Forum organized by Henrich Boll Shtiftung, where the topic of Universal Design was raised and included in the final presentation of the working group. The organizers of the Forum eventually prepared the recommendations for new Kyiv Mayor’s office (see photos from the event).
  • The topic of Universal Design was presented at Public Talk “Kyiv – How to Create a City Comfortable for All?” within the Marathon “Re: Invent Ukraine”. The event gathered 50 people.  Speakers included project manager Kristina Bagramian, conceptual urban architect Vlodco Zotov and informational designer Igor Sklyarevsky. See photos from the event. The link to a follow-up publication.
  • The topic of Universal Design was also presented to 180 participants of the II Forbes Forum “Success in Retail”, which was held on 5 June 2014. Project manager Kristina Bagramian made a presentation “Universal Design as a tool for managing customer’s loyalty and attracting new clients”. A partner of the speech, IDNT commercial design agency, supported the presentation with a case on new bank outlets of Oschadbank designed in compliance with the Universal Design principles (3D tour). Full list of participants. Photos from the Forum.
  • Multiple presentations were prepared and published on  “Universal Design in Services”, “Universal Design: 7 Principles of Comfortable
    , “Universal Design: Kreschatyk for Everyone”, “Universal Design: 7 Rules of Comfort for All”, with the maximum reach of 1,278 views per presentation.
  • The animation video on Universal Design was created, disseminated online and presented at different events.  You can watch it online.
  • Public presentation on Universal Design was conducted at a round table discussion "Community. User Generated Kyiv". The presentation was titled "Universal Design: 7 Principles for Comfortable Urban Living". The event gathered over 80 architects, urban designers and civic activists, willing to create a city, comfortable for all (see photos here).
  • A series of video lessons on Universal Design & Best Practices (4 videos) were created and published on UNDP Ukraine YouTube channel (link here).
  • A series of video lessons on Universal Design & Inclusive Education (7 videos) were created and published on UNDP Ukraine YouTube channel (link here).
  • Video Lecture on Universal Design was aired on Parliamentary channel “Rada” and its YouTube channel (link here).
  • Lectures on Universal Design were conducted for 27 students of the UN Ukraine Summer School “The World We Want”, and for 55 students of the Kyiv National Trade and Economic University.
  • 23 developers, urban activists, journalists and representatives of NGOs took part in a round table discussion “Universal Design and Accessibility for Residential and Commercial Real Estate” (see photos from the event here).
  • An input devoted to Universal Design and Accessibility was provided to “The Code of Business Ethics and Rules of Professional Ethics of Retailers”, developed by the Association of Retailers. The Code will be signed by the major retailers by the end of 2014.
  • Media coverage of issues related to universal design and accessibility of people with disabilities included over 50 stories in online and print media as well as interviews on TV.  The activities of the project generated 70 posts on the UNDP Ukraine Facebook page with maximum reach of 1,000 people per one post and multiple shared across many groups and by individuals. Here are links to some articles: Ukrainska Pravda Website – article “Ukrainian Cities for All or Just for the Selected?” by Natalia Kondel-Perminova, Kiev Urban Magazine Hmarochos – article by Igor Tyschenko “The City of Equal Opportunities”, GURT civic portal – article “How to Make a City Comfortable for All: the Concept of Universal Design” by Yaryna Pochtarenko, Gazeta newspaper – article “Design Has a Meaning Only if It Serves People” by Kateryna Kyseleva; web platform “Three People - Urbanist, Designer and Curator – Suggest What Kiev Should Do” – article by Yanina Kornienko and others. 

At the sub-national level:

  • Over 150 people, stakeholders from Kharkiv, Valky rayon and the town of Chuhuyiv, have been trained about Universal Design and Accessibility and Universal Design and Employment.
  • Assessments of existing capacity and barriers in environment, processes, products and services for persons with disabilities in the town of Chuhuyiv and Valky raion conducted with results presented in the communities.
  • 20 representatives from communities of Chuhuyiv and Valky rayon took part in a training devoted to fundraising, community engagement and project management conducted on 13-14 March 2014.
  • Strategies and Action Plans for creation of accessible environment for all were developed by community members in Chuhuyiv and Valky rayon.
  • Community initiatives were prioritised by working groups in Chuhuyiv town and Valky rayon. Among these are:  “School for everyone” (Chuhuyiv), “Early Intervention” (Chuhuyiv and Valky rayon), “Access to quality medical services for all women” (Chuhuyiv).

                        “School for Everyone”

  • Pilot initiative “School for everyone” in the town of Chuhuyiv is being implemented, with the accessibility audit conducted. Architectural Project for creation of accessibility at a school # 8 in Chuhuyiv has been created. The construction works in school # 8 are scheduled for December 2014- January 2015.
  • Manual for school teachers on how to work with children with different disabilities or functional limitations has been developed.
  • A two-day workshop “Inclusive Education: Theory and Practice” was held in the town of Chuguyiv and gathered over 25 school teachers and psychologists. The trainers were experts of Universal Design and Inclusive Education – Larisa Bayda and Volodymyr Azin (see photos here).

                          “Early Intervention”

  • UNICEF and local authorities have started implementation of the pilot initiatives on early intervention (habilitation services for children 0-4) in Chuhuyiv town and Valky rayon.
  • Series of trainings for medical teams  were organised by UNICEF  on different issues of provision of services to children age 0-4 who are in need of services of speech therapist,  physical rehabilitation specialist, etc.

“Access to quality medical services for all women”(Chuhuyiv)

  • WHO is working on the improvement of the quality of the gynaecological services for all women in Chuhuyiv, including female wheelchair users, elderly women and women with excessive weight. The pilot project includes capacity development for medical workers on how to provide medical services to women with different functional limitations as well as purchasing of the accessible gynaecological chair.






UN Partnership to Promote the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

US$ 161 300

US$ 172 300

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

US$ 10 000

US$ 10 000

United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)


US$ 2 000 

US$ 10 000 

UNDP Delivery


US$ 80,708

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